Thursday, June 3, 2021

Slow Work May

At the beginning of May as I got ready to layer up quilt number nine in my #quilt21in2021 quest, I didn't feel very enthusiastic.  I thought about taking the month off but knowing myself as I do, I was afraid I'd lose my momentum altogether so I chose a small quilt.  

After all,  the garden was constantly calling to "come out and play"!

I've (perhaps foolishly) agreed to open my garden for the local perennial garden group in late June so there is a deadline for weeding and mulching which I've never had before this.  Their impressions should be interesting since I'm currently moving away from the "standard" perennials and rewilding the gardens with more native plants.  

And of course, there is a long list of ideas for garden upgrades and improvements.  The new veggie raised bed is up and running in the sunniest part of the front yard 

and I've just finished redoing the brick edging along one of the back beds.
I have perhaps watched more gardening videos during the winter than an old lady who lives alone should???  So much inspiration!!  
No comments yet from the neighbors about the veggie bed -- do they not get it or is it just the "crazy old lady" again??

So with all the garden playtime, doing just one quilt in May was the perfect strategy!  
Number nine is finished.

The blocks were pieced with Marti Michell's templates as a teaching sample for my Bride's Bouquet (or Nosegay block) workshops.  They are 6" blocks rather than the traditional 12" blocks and there were suppose to be nine blocks.  As is often the case with quilters who have "too many oars out of the boat" one of the blocks disappeared?!?  Rather than make another block, I organized this setting.

I thought I wrote a post about this but so far, I haven't found it.  If/when I do, I'll add a link.
Basically, it's a 9 block setting -- the center block is the hexie flower applique set on point with four floral triangles.  
The four corner blocks are a bride's bouquet block with "sashing" rectangles and a pink cornerstone.  The four remaining bouquet blocks are set on point with two floral triangles and two background triangles.  
When all the blocks are set together, the large floral star emerges.  Feel free to knock off this idea!  It will work with any group of 8 quilt blocks!

Since the quilt top was only 31" square, I decided to work on my domestic machine and give George the month off.  I used a combination of free motion and walking foot quilting.  I have better control on small pieces on my domestic machine so I took the opportunity to fill the corners with feathers.

Here's how I customized the feather to the space available by making my own arc template starting  with a paper triangle. . . . .  

. . . . . which I folded and drew arcs until I got one I liked.

 I cut the arc with the triangle still folded in half to keep it symmetrical.
The fold line helped me center it on the quilt top and I matched the straight edge of the paper template to the same spot on each of the pieced blocks.
You can barely see my arc line here.
I decided it was important to make the end tear drop shapes uniform and so did a deep dive into the "miscellany" drawer -- i.e., stuff I rarely use but am loath to let go.
It's really an applique tool, but a teardrop is a teardrop.
Final step -- work up the courage to do freehand feathers (which took longer than necessary in the end).
I already had binding fabric chosen so the binding went quickly and "ta-da", it's finished!!

In other news, the peas are blooming
and the stawberries are ripening
and the triplets turned two yesterday!!
I also got to see my two older grandchildren on Monday for the first time in 17 months!!!  It was a wonderful visit, to be able to just sit and talk with them -- the 15 year old didn't roll her eyes at me once!!  I invited them for a summer visit on their own and so the hangout plans begin!!

I'm so grateful to have my closest friends and family vaccinated so we can move forward together.  If you are hesitant to vaccinate, I encourage you to reconsider.  It's been interesting over the past couple months as I listen to the vaccinate/not vaccinate conversations.  It has brought up memories of polio which struck hard in this area when I was 5.  I'm startled that I can remember the stringent warnings from my parents to "not go down the street near that house" because their son at age 6 had contracted polio.  I was 5?!?  I'm sure some of you remember too the elation of our families when the vaccines arrived -- 3rd grade in a line, the whole class getting the sugar cubes with the oral vaccine.  By the 1970's when my children were born, thank goodness the vaccine was the norm and that's where we need to get to with Covid.  
It needs to be just like small pox and tetanus and polio and rubella -- very rare!
The health and safety of our populations need to not be about politics, it needs to be about compassion.

And with that little rant, I'll sign off and go chose quilt number 10 from my shrinking stack.
Have a good weekend!


  1. So enjoyed this post and glad to see it. I looked in on you yesterday and I was concerned that your last post was in early May. Now I know why. Your finish is darling and thanks for the tips on how to do those feathers! Can't believe the triplets are 2 - how time flies. Blessings!

  2. I love that eight block setting! (And it totally looks like that was the plan from the start!)
    My mom's brother contracted polio when they were kids, and there was while where they didn't expect him to live. The moment a vaccine became available, she made sure her kids got it! (We had to get the shots - we were so jealous of the kids who got the later sugar cubes...)

  3. Ta courtepointe me plait beaucoup. Elle est très lumineuse grâce à ton choix judicieux des tissus.
    A bientôt.

  4. Your quilt is lovely and so are your flowerbeds. My husband had an older brother die from polio in 1952. There was never any question in our house about being vaccinated. He has always wondered what his life would have been like if his older brother had lived. Have a wonderful time with the garden walk.

  5. Beautiful quilting! I struggle with what to quilt where, so appreciate your deliberations. Thanks for pulling out the petal shaped templates-I've not seen them before but like the KKB leaves and circles for some applique projects. I'm sure the garden club will enjoy every minute!

  6. Was für ein interessanter Blogbeitrag, und der Garten ist traumhaft schön. Ich bin durch Valomea hier her gekommen und ich komme gerne wieder. :) Auf meinem Blog gibt es auch Patchwork UFO Gastbeiträge. Vielleicht magst du mal vorbeischauen, heute ist Christina aka Minerva Huhn bei mir als Gastautorin auf meinem Blog. Wir würden uns sehr über einen Besuch und ein paar nette Worte freuen. ;-)

    Herzliche Grüße